What to do about furloughed PCs?
As the UK went into lockdown, people were told to work from home, and some were furloughed. This left offices empty. But employees weren’t the only ones being furloughed; PCs and other IT equipment have been too.
At first, the message given by the government was ‘work from home’. This resulted in organisations forking out to give their employees an office set-up at home. The message then changed in to ‘stay alert’. People were encouraged to start working in the office if they could abide to social distancing.
When questioned by the BBC, 50 of the biggest UK employers said they had no plans to return all staff to the office full-time in the near future. One of the main reasons for this, is that firms could not see a way of accommodating all employees whilst social distancing regulations are still in place.
Large open plan offices were initially brought in as a way of creating a more collaborative environment. However, with social distancing looking like a permanent feature in the post-Covid world, open plan offices could be a thing of the past. It is looking more likely that some businesses will use offices for activities that cannot be done online. This could include team meetings that produce better results face-to-face than when done online.
With larger offices looking like they could be empty for the foreseeable, what can be done about all the IT equipment that is still there from before lockdown? Gathering dust, they are no use to anyone. If larger offices do start returning, it is more than likely that they will be due an upgrade. Companies, like Zixtel, want to buy this equipment, especially in bulk. They recycle or refurbish the goods so they can be put back on to the market for others to purchase at a lower cost than brand-new. This could only be a good thing for businesses wanting to get rid of surplus, unused IT. They will get money for the goods, which can then be put back into the business in other projects. A win-win situation!
Some smaller businesses have planned to get rid of their offices altogether. Seeing benefits in working from home, they have decided to not renew leases on offices, and switch to working from home full time. This will help to save the small businesses money on rent and utilities. But what about all the IT equipment that has been left in the offices? With money having been spent on preparing employees for working from home, it is essential that value of redundant IT equipment is utilised. Zixtel will buy equipment like this. Not only do they take old goods off small businesses’ hands so they don’t have to worry about what to do with them, they will pay for them. By getting money for old equipment, small businesses will have more money to spend elsewhere.